China recently began piloting the use of bank agents. These pilots show significant promise for financial inclusion even though they suffer from low client usage, which is also the case in many other countries. Allowing agents to offer new services and a greater variety of transactions, such as taking deposits and opening new accounts may lead to higher growth and use.
A CGAP research team visited pilot agents in Yunnan and Chongqing in August 2013, with a follow up work in Yunnan in October. This presentation details field research on agents and clients.